Without mentioning any names of the company or people there, I did get some pretty neat experience at one audio component manufacturer a few years ago, albeit for only two months. As for why I voluntarily left in such a short time, I will only say that I was not compatible with my bosses. Yes, I did leave of my own will since I actually have self respect.
Here is what I did in just two months for them from Monday, Feb. 2nd, 2004 to Thursday, April 1st, 2004:
A. â€œLoudspeaker Enclosure Designer & Detailerâ€
B. â€œTechnical Liaisonâ€ with O.E.M.â€™s
C. â€œTechnical Documentation Specialistâ€
D. â€œAudio Component Test Technicianâ€
E. â€œQuality Control & Visual Inspection Technicianâ€
A. I designed, drew, dimensioned, and noted for production and cost quotes a new, floor standing, sealed loudspeaker enclosure with grills and plinths. This included using digital Vernier calipers to measure the drivers and grill mounting parts and creating needed views of them as symbols in AutoCAD LT 2004 in an appropriately named and structured symbol library.
** In the fall of 2004, just a few months later, these were sold at a prominent store in NJ for about $2,600 a pair. I got to see them there. It was really cool to see what I designed and drew up and detailed for production actually got made, tweaked out, painted nicely, and sold. I was offered a pair for $2,000, but said no thanks as I knew the cost of the drivers was less than $100. DIY if you can.
B. I spoke with the presidents and technicians of cabinet shops and loudspeaker O.E.Mâ€™s to establish business contacts and to verify their CNC capabilities regarding downloading .dwg or .dxf files for automated / directly extracted CNC programming data from the drawing files as well as their capabilities for reading, opening, viewing, and printing those files as attached to E-mail documents.
B. I technically advised the vice president and purchasing manager on the creation and establishment of the engineering / technical documentation department regarding needed equipment and related performance parameters, technical and clerical resources, and standard work area arrangements and environmental aspects.
C. I used AutoCAD LT 2004 to create all title blocks, text & font styles and related parameters, layers, line types, colors, naming conventions, drafting and dimensioning methods and presentation formats, and printing parameters for mechanical design / detail drawings, electrical wiring schematics, and their symbols.
C. I created the methods and formats for digitally photographing the audio components for identification of operational test points for dealers, distributors, and service technicians accessing the companyâ€™s website based technical manuals.
C. I created the methods and formats for digitally photographing the audio component kits in various stages of development for clarity of electrical component placement and wiring layouts until assembly is completed and then for identification of operational test points for the customers.
C. I created and standardized the methods for documenting the test technician hand-drawn schematics with critical operational voltage test point measurement values.
C. I created the new test technician inspection and performance test documentation for their multi-channel, solid state amplifiers.
C. I technically edited the written instructions and technical diagrams in the assembly manual for one of their power amplifier kits.
D. I performed basic operational tests of audio components including gain, frequency response (including RIAA curve parameters for phono preamplifiers), RMS power in both modes of operation as applicable, noise & hum, and short circuit protection along with multi-channel input-to-output tracking using a signal generator, spectrum analyzer, oscilloscope, and digital multi-meter.
D. I tested certain types of devices for standard operational parameters, overall performance, and matched sets.
D. I performed basic electronic modifications to audio components.
D. I replaced two selector switches in the spectrum analyzer for proper operation.
E. I performed visual inspection of audio components.
E. I performed visual inspection of single and double sided printed circuit boards for artwork / trace errors including short circuits, opens, and cold solder joints along with verifying proper component values and then tested them for basic operation parameters.
* I sorted and organized specific stock for efficient & predictable selection and performance.
* I organized and grouped like tools and items together on my test and work bench area for efficient use, general cleanliness, and safety.
* I organized all of the audio test â€œjigsâ€ into one common area for readily accessible use by all test technicians.
* I rearranged the audio listening room furniture and decorations for better acoustical performance.
The hands on testing, inspection, and quality control at my test bench in the shop were the portions of the job that I had to do in the morning before being able to do the portions that I wanted to do; which was speaker system and enclosure designing and using AutoCAD for drawing schematics and so on at my desk in the office area in the afternoon. That is what excited me and made me want to come to work every day.
Speaker system and enclosure design, research and development, prototyping, testing, tweaking, and so on is where my heart was at during this time and still very much is. It has been a consuming hobby for 22 years. It began with car audio and designing and building subwoofer enclosures. As I got older and more aware of the home audio market, and how lavishly esoteric the high end arena can be, my knowledge and skills increased to where my involvement transcended into that realm and has stayed since.